5 Red Flags You're Ditching Your Friends Now That You're In A Relationship
When you're single, finding time to be a good friend is pretty easy. For the most part, your time is your own and come the weekend the only thing on your agenda is to turn up with your crew. But once you're in a relationship, it can be all too easy to start accidentally neglecting your friends while shifting your priorities completely toward your new boo. The signs you’re ditching your friends for your new relationship might not seem all that obvious to you because, after all, you're the one who's doing the ditching. And while you most definitely should be enjoying yourself, putting your friends on the back burner can certainly lead to some trouble.
While the urge to put all of your focus on a new love can be pretty tempting, forgetting about the friends who have been there for you long before your new bae waltzed into the picture could really hurt their feelings. Romantic relationships come and go, but friendships are something that carry us through the bad times and make the good times even better. So if you're wondering if you've totally been ditching your friends, here are six red flags that may definitely be the case.
1. You Forgot Their Birthday
Let's face it, you are pretty much guaranteed to forget someone's birthday at some point because everyone has got a lot going on. But forgetting a friend's birthday (particularly a close friend) is pretty hurtful, and is definitely something that requires a heartfelt apology.
"In the past you might have sent a card, an e-card, or celebrated with them," psychotherapist, author, and relationships specialist LeslieBeth Wish tells Elite Daily. "But now you are so focused on not missing one minute with your new love that you don't have time for your friends."
According to Wish, a great way to make sure it doesn't happen again is to get more organized.
"Add your friends' birthdays to your hard copy calendar and your phone [and] make sure you always look at least a week ahead on your calendar to see what's on it," suggests Wish.
2. You Are Speaking To Them Less
Nope, sadly texting doesn't count according to Wish, so you either need to set a date to meet or pick up the phone and call.
"Yes, you might have texted, but good friends actually still talk to each other," says Wish. "One solution is to make a list of your closest friends, and your next closest friends, and set reminders to call them."
And while it may seem easy to assume that they should be OK with the decrease in contact, relationship expert Susan Winter tells Elite Daily that this isn't necessarily the case.
"Make an effort to keep in touch. Though you may be blissfully distracted by the honeymoon phase of your relationship, your friends are your support group and allies in life," explains Winter.
3. You Make Excuses For Why You Can't Hang Out Or Frequently Cancel Plans
"If you make too many excuses too often about not being able to be with them," then this is definitely a sign that you are leaving your friends behind for the sake of your new boo, says Wish.
Partners can totally be time consuming and maybe you won't be able to hang out with your friends quite as often as you used to, but if your absence has become a regular thing then it's time to start thinking of ways to include your friends into your new life.
But first thing's first: It's never a bad idea to start off with an apology for putting them on the back burner.
4. You Only Make Plans To Hang When Your Partner Is Busy
"I've had some friends that didn't want to make plans because they wanted to be available for their boyfriends," dating expert and licensed marriage therapist Anita A. Chlipala tells Elite Daily. "But when they knew he would be unavailable to hang out, that's when they would reach out to their friends."
And needless to say, no one wants to feel like they are a backup plan, especially not your close friends.
According to Chlipala, the best way to handle this issue is to have a conversation about what's been going on and actively take steps to improve your behavior.
"Do your part and invite your friend to spend time with you," says Chlipala.
5. You Aren't There For Them When They Need You
"You used to make time to listen to your friends, or be there to support them when they were in pain," says Winter. "Now, you justify to yourself that they can manage on their own."
But we all know that this is far from the truth. The whole point of having friends is so you don't have to move through life alone.
"Showing up for your friends is showing up for loyalty," explains Winter. "Lovers come and go. And though you wish the best outcome for this relationship, chances are good that you may be replaying the heartache that you experienced with your friends in the following months."
So what's the moral of the story? Even though falling in love can be a total whirlwind, forgetting about the people that were there for you when things weren't going your way is so important. And while it might seem like it has to be one or the other, that just ain't the truth.
"You can have a partner, have friends, and be a friend," says Winter.
Check out the “Best of Elite Daily” stream in the Bustle App for more stories just like this!